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“See the whales and dolphins in this wonderful place!”
Review of Mar & Oro

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Mar & Oro
Reviewed July 17, 2012

Our group is already coming back from a very special weekend at Contadora Island, exactly from Villa Romantica, where Charlie and Yarelis (Yaris) did their best to make us feel happy. And they succeeded it!
Villa Romantica is located at Playa Cacique, a very nice and clean beach. You can arrive Contadora Island by ferry (as us) or by plane using the 800 meters long runway. In both cases, you arrive in Playa Galleon.
The most motivating thing for us was the trips in the glass bottom boat, with Yaris, Abdiel and Pedro (we did it twice!!!!), to see the whales and dolphins swimming near the boat, it was amazing and invaluable!!!! They know how to get the sites near the whales to enjoy the views and take incredible pictures and videos.
During the trips we saw the houses and hotels from the sea, famous people as Christian Dior or the last Sha of Iran Rheza Pahlevi were living there some time ago. We also visited and enjoy Mogo Mogo Beach (beautiful pink shells) and Pacheca Beach (wonderful, clean and warm waters).
Villa Romantica is a very interesting and attention-grabbing place; you can see the use of white marble on the floors in the restaurant and other areas. The combination of some fittings and the special Roman Style decoration in the rooms (not always good taste), is acceptable according to the Villa’s name. From Bella Vista Suite, we enjoyed incredible and unforgettable views of the beach and the other islands.
Only a complaint: the service at the restaurant was slow, maybe there were many persons at dinner time or maybe the waitress is not as good as the rest of the staff. But the food was fresh and great.
We are planning to come back in the near future.

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Vicky512
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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103 - 109 of 347 reviews

Reviewed June 29, 2012

We have stayed and dined at Villa Romantica many times in the two years that we have spent in Panama. It is our go to spot in Contadora. Charlies Casa is truly a home away from home and I recommend it to any traveller coming to Las Perlas. The hotel is comfortable and full of characters and personality. The bar and restaurant staff are always sweet and accommodating and the owner Charlie goes out of his way to make us feel welcome and comfortable. The hotel itself itself has comfortable rooms in the best location on the island. The food in the restaurant is always fresh and expertly prepared and also very reasonably priced. Check out the langosta! I would highly recommend Villa Romantica to anyone thinking of spending some time in Contadora.

Room Tip: Honeymoon suite or Panoramic Suite are well worth the extra if they are available
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  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank GeorgiaRyan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 14, 2012

In a word, the place is paradise. I stayed 3 nights in May 2012 and experienced the utmost comfort and relaxation. I didn't hear the noise a single airplane, boat or car the whole time - only the ocean waves, it was very serene. I was picked up at the airport in their pick-up and given a welcome drink upon check-in. I stayed in the Panama Suite, which has a king sized bed, large opulent bathroom, air conditioning, a big-screen TV, a safe and a GREAT view of the beach with the large sliding glass doors. The feeling of the property is slightly out-dated but oppulent and very comfortable, if not a bit worn by the beach weather. The floors are marble, the deck is made of glass so you always have a view of the beach and there are multiple places to situate yourself in your downtime, whether it be reading at one of the private mini-terraces that look down on the beach, under one of the thatch huts at the beach, or on a quiet ledge near the giant chess game. I believe they are in the process of biolding a pool in the back as well. The beach, Playa Cacique, is pristine compated to other Panama beaches, and the hotel has a few kayaks and snorkels free to use as well as a hammock and beach chairs. The hotel staff was extremely courteous and friendly, and everyone knew me by name during me stay. Once the circuit breaker failed in my room and they re-set it immediately when I told them. The bar is fun to hang out in at night, and the bartender is happy to serve. ALL of my meals were delicious. The breakfast included in the room price includes juice, coffee, a fruit plate, toast and your choice of a breakfast entree (eggs,pancakes, etc). The dinner menu is reminicent of european fare and includes fresh seafood, definately try the pasta. Please remember that the culture in Panama, not to mention on a teeny tiny island, means that servie is relaxed, and all of the non-seafood items have been shipped in, but I promise everything is absolutely adequate and above par. They also gave me a ride back to the airport and had information about other activities on the island as well. I feel my stay was a great value and I give this an excellent rating for the service, comfort, environment and food combined. Not a single complaint.

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled solo
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2  Thank MissNic253
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 27, 2012

I stayed there two nights and can let you know this is the best on the Island in all ways.
The staff and owner are very friendly, helpfull and very flexible. I could stay longer in the room for my late check out, a ride to the airports was offered, got a frigerator in the room on my request to keep the wine cool I bought in the supermarket, all for NO dollar extra. Must say first time I experience this on my Panama vacation.
The restaurant is very good, even people from other hotels come over here for diner, I liked the red snapper a la plancha, think they got fresh fish every day. Only found the white Chille wine (they only got one choice) a bit poor what seems to be the same case on the other bar/restaurants on the Island.
The hotel was cosy and family like.
It had the nicest beach of Contadora, there are four on this Island, of which only one other with a hotel, called Galeo what was very expensive with cold distant service, where the only action was seeing the ferries and planes on it's beach.
In this period of time there is nothing to do on this Island, just walking around (new streets with many hills = good exercise in the heat) and relaxing on the beach. So, should request for a stay of three days max.
The hotel itself has more opportunities like disco, minigolf, etc. that are now turned off (no maintenance) awaiting for the next high season starting at the end of the year.
There is also some construction going on, also by the neighbours what sometimes can bother when you are relaxing on the beach. So I walked around looking to nature and dropped myself on the beach between working hours.
I would certainly come back to this hotel, what in my opinion is the only one giving all comfort at the beach and a holiday feeling, also thanks to it's staff and management.

Room Tip: If you the money, take the suite, it's the only one with a terrace and full view on beach and se...
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  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank Kristiaan J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 5, 2012

We stayed in Villa Romantica for a weekend late February 2012. Fantastic position right on the beach. We were recommended by friends who live in Panama City as it serves the best food on the island. Rooms were quirky but clean and they are building a swimming pool at the rear of the property. Glass bottom boat ride was an experience and the uninhabited islands we visited were special. My brother went on a fishing trip and caught a grouper which we got the chef to cook for our lunch, superb, best fish ever.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Julie H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 3, 2012

This has been my second visit to Villa Romantica and my girlfriend and I had a wonderful time there. The room we had was spacious and clean. The property is located on a great spot on Contadora Island, and the beach was nice and clean. The quality and selection of food and drinks was great. I can only say good things about Villa Romantica! I am looking forward to my next visit!

  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Sky L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 25, 2012

We loved our stay at Villa Romantica! It was quiet and relaxing...just what we were looking for! It's right on the water overlooking Playa Cacique and it was so nice to fall asleep to the sounds of the waves. Charlie and his staff were warm, friendly and accommodating. The hotel is VERY clean as is the beach...the food also was amazing. Each day at lunch you could see fresh whole fish being carried in for dinner. I highly recommend the corvina. We also loved the glass-bottom boat tour as well...Charlie and his captain will take you on a personal tour of the uninhabited islands of Las Perlas. Quite a treat!

Room Tip: Qe loved the Panorama Suite..big with a wonderful view. If we go again, we would do the Honeymoon Ca...
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  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Mzbellig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mar & Oro

Address: Calle Playa Cacique | Casa A24, Urb. Isla de Contadora, playa Cacique, Panama Province 4470, Panama
Location: Panama > Panama Province > Pearl Islands > Contadora Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Contadora Island
Price Range: $163 - $211 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Mar & Oro 3.5*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Mar & Oro is the only hotels on the island, Contadora, with direct access to the the most beautiful beach on the island, Cacique Beach. With recently updated rooms, Mar & Oro features a great range of rooms types for you to pick from. Furthermore, the property is now run by a new administration which promises to deliver a great customer service to ensure you and those who accompany you have an excellent experience. Whether you are looking to enjoy some drinks by the beach or have a great meal, Mar & Oro has got you covered. Within the hotel we feature a beach bar known as Cacique Beach Bar, and a restaurant known as MiraOlas. Since we are located next to the beach we take great pride delivering the freshest seafood. To ensure that our seafood is the freshest we buy it directly from the native fishermen's which spend hours fishing daily from the beautiful blue Pacific Ocean which surrounds Contadora. During your stay with us, you will be able to request an umbrella and beach chairs to spend hours relaxing at Cacique Beach. With our staff from Cacique Beach Bar standing by to facilitate any beverage or meal we ensure you will have an unforgettable experience that will last a life-time. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Villa Romantica Hotel Contadora Island
Romantica Hotel Contadora Island

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